Two days after the 2011 Boston Bruins had their first reunion, via a Zoom conference call, since they hoisted the Stanley Cup almost nine years ago in Vancouver, former Bruins defenseman Dennis Seidenberg was still laughing and extremely grateful to see so many of his Cup-winning teammates.
“That was great wasn’t it? Just so much fun,” the recently retired Seidenberg told Boston Hockey Now via the phone from his family home on Long Island Thursday.
The “Locker Room Time Machine”, put on by the Bruins and Bud Light, reunited the championship team (with the exception of Nathan Horton) along with fans tuning in on YouTube – to watch Game 7 from the 2011 Stanley Cup Final together. Even though Seidenberg had seen some of his 2011 teammates last June when he and eight other 2011 alums were honorary banner-waiving captains, they have never had that many from the team together since they handed the Stanley Cup off to each other after beating the Vancouver Canucks 4-0 at Rogers Arena on June 15, 2011.
“We had that little get together last year in the Stanley Cup Final to wave the flag,” Seidenberg recalled. “Other than that though, there’s a couple of guys I still talk and text with on a regular basis but that’s about it. Like, Timmy [Thomas] I haven’t seen or spoke to since he left Boston. ‘Kabber’ [Tomas Kaberle] it was crazy! I saw him randomly two years ago in Yorkville in Toronto. I bumped into him walking around up there on the streets. It was hilarious! But really, I haven’t really seen too many guys. I speak to them here and there but [Tuesday] was the first time I really saw them and got to catch up and it was a great experience.”
Like Seidenberg, hardly any of his teammates have seen him since he stopped playing after the 2013-14 season and towards the end of the call, former Bruins winger Milan Lucic toasted the 2011 Conn Smythe winner and two-time Vezina Trophy winner for his heroics during that Cup run.
“I haven’t seen Timmy T in a long time,” Lucic said. “You were the MVP that season… a .938 save percentage. What a historic season for a goalie. Tank, I appreciate what you did that year. I love you man. Cheers.”
Lucic raised another toast to the entire team in a touching moment but it was the epic chirping that started right away that had the players and fans alike in stitches for much of the live stream.
“It was amazing!” Seidenberg said laughing. ‘I’m not good at chirping so I just kind of stayed in the background but I couldn’t stop laughing when I heard all that stuff going back and forth. It was like we’ve been hanging out ever since and we didn’t miss a beat. The camaraderie and the bond that we have that we created through going through so many challenges is so strong and to be able to jump on a Zoom call right where we left off was great.”
Original Merlot Line linemates Brad Marchand and Gregory Campbell squared off in the main event with Campbell, who carries himself quietly in the public eye, took Marchand down with a T.K.O. with some fast and furious jabs at Marchand’s hairline after the well-known chirper, Marchand told Campbell he was going bald.
“I’m going bald? Your (expletive) forehead starts (expletive) eight inches back from your (expletive) eyes,” Campbell quipped guns a-blazing.
Brad Marchand vs. Gregory Campbell in all its glory: pic.twitter.com/1EXUkVPGsw
— Conor Ryan (@ConorRyan_93) April 22, 2020
According to Seidenberg, Campbell chirping was nothing new to him and his teammates but it brought back tons of memories and laughs.
“Oh my God! I almost cried. I was laughing so hard,” Seidenberg said of the epic chirp whipping Campbell put on his original Merlot line linemate. “That’s his daily life but he took it to another level. It got even better during those extra two hours! Again, I wanted to jump in but it takes way too long to get a comeback for him when he’s on a roll, especially on a Zoom Call so I just stay in the back and enjoy.”
Seidenberg mentioned that the Zoom call kept going for over two hours after they made it private around 11 PM ET. While that would’ve been must-watch TV for the fans as well, watching that game was good enough and Seidenberg enjoyed that time just as much since this was actually the first time he watched Game 7 straight through.
“I’ve watched bits and pieces and obviously the ending but never the whole game straight through,” Seidenberg said. “Then a couple weeks ago, I’m flipping through my channels and I saw NESN. So it was exciting because they had just started airing the reruns and I’ve been watching every one. I don’t know how I got NESN but there it was and it was great!
So yeah, up until recently it’s just been some of the guys sending out clips on a regular basis actually but never the whole games. For me, to be able to watch all of those games from that run and then finish it with the guys was incredible. I don’t like watching myself play so that’s why I never really watched them but I guess the timing and stuff, I really got into it and it gave me something to do at night.”
Tuesday night Seidenberg and the 2011 Stanley Cup champions gave their fans and each other a much-needed respite from COVID19 tragedy and it’s something he’ll never forget.
“That was special,” he said. “I’m glad they set it up.”